5 Biggest Mistakes People Make After a Car Accident
1. Failing to Report the Accident to the Police and to the Insurance Company
2. Failing to Document Your Injuries to the Police, Rescue, and the Insurance Company
3. Failing to Go to a Doctor to Document Your Injuries
4. Making a Signed or Recorded Statement to Your Own Insurance Company Wihtout First Getting Legal Advice
5. Making a Signed or Recorded Statement to the Other Person's Insurance Company Without First Getting Legal Advice
When clients come to Flaxman Law Group after a car accident, they often explain the fear they felt during their collision. It's typical for people to panic. In fact, car crashes are one of the leading causes of PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) for most people. The distress of a serious collision can lead to mistakes made after an accident, but these errors can lead to less compensation than you deserve. If you drive on Hollywood, Miami, or Florida streets, you will want to avoid these top five mistakes after a car accident:1. Failing to Report the Accident to the Police and to the Insurance Company
If you suspect a crime, it's important to report the accident to police. Even if you don't think a crime was committed, calling the police ensures the police have your version of events. Unfortunately, there have been cases where a driver failed to report an accident and the other driver accused the driver of a hit-and-run or other illegal activity, resulting lawsuits and serious legal trouble. You can avoid this by reporting the crash. Reporting your accident also gives you a police report, which is important for insurance purposes.
It is also important to contact your insurance company soon after the accident to report it. Failure to do so can mean your insurance claim is rejected. Failure to report an accident may also be against the terms of your policy, which may allow the insurer to void your policy, leaving you without coverage.2. Failing to Document Your Injuries
After an accident, it's important to jot down what you remember and to take multiple photos of the scene, including the surrounding area. Get the insurance information of the other driver and contact information for any witnesses, if you can. Having this documentation in hand and being able to share it with police and insurers can help the investigation and can ensure you don't get blamed for causing an accident that wasn't your fault.3. Failing to Go to a Doctor to Document Your Injuries
Even if you think you've been lucky enough to walk away from an accident without serious injury, it's important to go to a doctor as soon as possible. You may have sustained a serious injury, such as whiplash or brain trauma, and may just not be seeing symptoms yet. A doctor can help get you treatment quickly.
Your doctor can also evaluate and document your injuries, so you have proof you have been injured in the car collision.4. Making a Signed or Recorded Statement to Your Own Insurance Company Without First Getting Legal Advice
Of course, you expect your own insurance company to be on your side. However, you need to remember that insurance companies are committed to serving their shareholders, not you. The more quickly and cheaply they resolve claims, the happier their shareholders are. An attorney represents your interests and can work to make sure your insurer acts in good faith.5. Making a Signed or Recorded Statement to the Other Person's Insurance Company Without First Getting Legal Advice
The other party's insurance company has a financial incentive to pay you as little as possible. Talking to an attorney first means your attorney can represent you and look out for your best interests, so you don't say something completely innocent that can be used against you to pay you less than you deserve.
Do you need help after a car accident? Whether you've already made an initial mistake or not, contact Flaxman Law Group for a free, no obligation case consultation. We're here to help those who have been injured through no fault of their own.